Infraspecific variability in the volatile leaf oils of Chamelaucium uncinatum (Myrtaceae)

Louise M. Egerton-Warburton*, Emilio L. Ghisalberti, John A. Considine

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


Variation in leaf essential oils and morphometric characters among 38 locations of Chamelaucium uncinatum were used to describe infraspecific diversity and geographic patterns of variation. Four chemical types were designated: citronellal, α-pinene or limonene dominant, or one in which all three monoterpenes were co-dominant. The citronellal and limonene types were geographically restricted but the α-pinene and co-dominant types were widespread. The citronellal type also demonstrated higher diversity (by Shannon-Weiner index) in the oil profile than the other types. Biochemical differentiation was not strongly paralleled by morphological differences between chemotypes; only the citronellal-type differed morphologically from the other three types with respect to floral bud and leaf characters. Based on biochemical and morphological differences, and geographic localization, it was concluded that the citronellal type may represent a recently evolved ecotype of C. uncinatum.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)873-888
Number of pages16
JournalBiochemical Systematics and Ecology
Issue number8
StatePublished - Dec 1998


  • Chamelaucium uncinatum
  • Chemotypes
  • Ecotypic variation
  • Essential oils
  • Geographic variation
  • Myrtaceae
  • Waxflower

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ecology, Evolution, Behavior and Systematics
  • Biochemistry


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